No, not at all. Korea doesn’t want to be Japan or associated with Japan at all. They have a very unique, beautiful culture. They very easily stand on their own culturally, spiritually, and economically. They even have a few notches above Japan in some areas, so why would they want to be Japan? They have never wanted to be Japan. They just want Japan to leave them alone.
Think about the history of both countries. Korea has a very proud history that dates back to the beginning of time. Korea used to be the major power in the east and at one time, ruled not only the Korean peninsula, but Manchuria, most of China, Mongolia, and part of Russia. That was during the dynasty that began with Dangun, their first emperor, that lasted for 5,000. They messed up because they began breaking into factions and fighting back and fort. United, they were a great force, and even now, as a very small country, they have succeeded in becoming one of the richest most powerful countries in the world, but they are now just a small speck. The Koreans have something special in their nature that causes things like this to happen. Perhaps it is the knowledge that they knew about God from the beginning, and it sets them apart and makes them a stronger nation.
Japan is impressive, but it lacks a lot that Korea has, so why would Korea want to be Japan? Japan was fragmented for many, many years until Hideyoshi Toyotomi of Osaka Castle united them. He thought Korea should be part of Japan as the Japanese have thought many times, but the Koreans fended them off. Korea wants to be Korea, not Japan. The Japanese borrowed the Confucian system from China as did Korea, and it has helped both countries a lot. Both countries are serious about trying to do the right thing and honoring the older people, and it gives them both strength. Japan is interesting because of its belief in praying to the spirits of the rocks, the trees, etc., Shintoism, but Shintoism doesn’t answer the big questions of life the way Christianity does in Korea. The Koreans are a country committed to doing the right thing. Otherwise, Buddhism would have remained the main religion, but the Koreans couldn’t handle the hypocrisy that was displayed among the people in Korea who were practicing Buddhism. When Christianity was introduced, it seemed natural to embrace it because they already knew about God. As for the Japanese, they don’t practice Buddhism because they are trying to do the right thing. They practice it because their ancestors practiced it. They worship their ancestors, and but ancestors aren’t always right. I have a lot of ancestors who were cowboy outlaws and wild Indians. If I did what they did just because they were my ancestors, the world would be in trouble. It is good to honor the older ones, but we have to honor the ones who have gone the best route, and think for ourselves when it comes to trying to do the right thing.
When a Japanese leaves Japan, they are away from what makes them good, the Japanese society. Many Japanese get in trouble outside of Japan because there are no Japanese neighbors for them to worry about what they think. However, the Koreans seem to do better in other countries because they have a commitment within themselves to do the right thing. There are a lot of drunk businessmen chasing prostitutes from Japan outside of Japan who would never do it inside of Japan. You can’t say that about the Koreans. Koreans have the reputation for being the ones either trying to teach others about God or looking for the local church. Why would Koreans want to be Japanese?
Japanese send out anime and games. Right now, that is their contribution to the world. Koreans send out K-pop and Korean dramas. One of the reasons Korean dramas are getting such a big following around the world is because they are quality programs, and there is no one taking their clothes off, cussing, taking drugs, etc. People are ready for clean entertainment, and Korea’s attitude of trying to do things right is good for the world. People like watching those Korean dramas online. Young Christians from around the world are drawn to Korea. The people who like what Japan puts out are into fantasy and even nightmares. There is a place for both. Korea doesn’t want to be Japan, and neither should they.